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Fauci says a redefinition of fully vaccinated is ‘on the table’

Dr. Anthony Fauci listens as President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the Omicron Covid-19 variant at the White House on November 29.

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A redefinition of what it means to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 is certainly “on the table,” Dr. Anthony Fauci said Friday.

Speaking to CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” President Joe Biden’s top medical advisor said that there was no doubt that optimum vaccination was with a booster dose.

Currently, individuals are considered to be fully vaccinated either two weeks after their second dose of a two-dose series, such as the PfizerBioNtech vaccine, or two weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

But Fauci said on Friday that the regulators were open to reconsidering those definitions.

“There’s no doubt that optimum vaccination is with a booster,” he said.

“Whether or not the CDC is going to change that, it certainly is on the table and open for discussion. I’m not sure exactly when that will happen. But I think people should not lose sight of the message that there’s no doubt if you want to be optimally protected, you should get your booster.”

CNBC Health & Science

Vaccination status has already had an impact on the lives of millions of Americans. Millions of health care workers around the country are required, under Biden’s embattled vaccine mandate, to be fully immunized against the coronavirus, while some states and cities have imposed their own rules that puts limits on what unvaccinated people are able to do.

Dr. Scott Gottlieb, former FDA commissioner and CNBC contributor, told “Squawk Box” on Friday that a surge in cases meant it may soon become difficult to get a booster shot.

“We know omicron moves very quickly … this variant is going to move much more quickly through the country than delta did, so people who are waiting to get a booster to afford themselves a measure of protection against this variant – time is running out to do that,” he said.

“Appointments are going to fill up, demand’s going to surge. The best way to protect yourself is a booster shot.”

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